At least 1,200 Dead as Super-Typhoon Haiyan Rips through Philippines
TEHRAN (Tasnim) - The Red Cross said that more than 1,200 people are confirmed dead as Haiyan, one of the most powerful-ever tropical typhoons, blows through the Philippines. Local authorities earlier put the death toll at nearer 100.
The Philippines Red Cross has announced that at least 1,000 could have been killed by Haiyan super typhoon in central Tacluban city and the region around it alone, while previously Captain John Andrews, deputy director general of the country's Civil Aviation Authority, reported that 100 bodies had been found on the streets of Tacloban in Leyte province. In the neighboring Samar province 200 are declared dead, Reuters reported the Red Cross as saying.
When asked by ABS-CBN television Saturday about the number of victims of the typhoon, Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla said "I think hundreds."
The category 5 super-typhoon Haiyan, one of the strongest ever registered, has caused havoc in 36 provinces of the Philippines, with gusts of wind reaching the incredible speed of 315 kilometers (195 miles) per hour. The worst affected areas are the eastern islands of Leyte and Samar, which sustained the heaviest damage Friday, RT reported.
Nearly all houses in Tacloban, which has a population of about 220,000, were damaged or destroyed, and casualties were feared to be massive, a disaster official told Reuters earlier, without announcing any casualty figures. Many as yet unidentified bodies have been found on the roads.
The government earlier ordered more plastic body bags to be delivered to Tacloban.
The Philippines experiences several typhoons every year. In 2013 there have already been 24 of them, with Haiyan becoming the second category 5 typhoon.
Last year Typhoon Bopha devastated three towns in Philippines' southern Mindanao province, killing 1,100 people and resulting in a record $1 billion damage.